It is now a little more than two weeks since we met in beautiful Cape Town, and we hope that everyone is now safely settled back home, perhaps after taking the opportunity for a few days of tourism in Africa.
As we start to move on to arrangements for next year it is appropriate to finally thank once again everyone who made this such a successful and happy meeting.
Starting with the original proposal back in 2012 and the choice of site and venue, Marnus van Wyk worked tirelessly to make our 2014 meeting one to really remember fondly. He, the Local Organising Committee and of course Dawne Johnson and the conference organisers, CONSULTUS, gave us a beautiful location and with meeting facilities and wireless access that worked perfectly. And of course more excellent food and drink than one could possibly imagine. None of that happens without a huge amount of preparation over many months and it is hard to overestimate the effort that the local organising team put in to make everything ran so well during the meeting. It is the sign of a very well organised conference that the arrangements become so smooth that we take them for granted.
No conference is possible without a programme, and for that we have to thank our 2014 Technical Programme Committee, chaired by Theo Samaras and Phil Chadwick. Starting with ideas from members of both Societies, they constructed an interesting and innovative programme that tried to reflect the broad range of interests within our Societies as well as bringing a few fresh ideas from outside. We must of course thank the plenary speakers, the workshop convenors and the four people who volunteered to give early morning tutorials, but we also must thank the people who presented posters and talks. Without them (you) there could be no conference. We also would like to thank the people who chaired all the sessions, and the people who came to them. It was great to see people arrive for the tutorials in the morning and to see people still there for the early evening seminars and workshops.
The future of our Societies and our meetings lies with students, and the joint Awards Committee chaired by Alexandre Legros and Heidi Danker-Hopfe worked hard to run the Student Awards competition. Their job of course would have been impossible without the people who judged the student presentations and posters – to you as well, we say thank you.
Our personal thanks go to Drs Jeffrey Carson and Astrid Chamson-Reig from Lawson Health Research Institute in Canada; they have been constant contributors whose hard work behind the scenes brought the programme and the awards to fruition.
The quality of the meeting is dependent on sponsorship; without the kind support of MMF, EPRI, GSMA, the US Office of Naval Research Global, ZonMw, FEKO, SAECA, IGEA and EMSS the meeting as we experienced it could not have happened.
Finally, and above all, we would like to thank everyone who came to Cape Town and made it such a wonderful meeting. Even the weather was mostly kind to us, though perhaps not even Marnus could have planned that so well!